FRANKLIN, Tex. (KBTX) – The National Weather Service has released preliminary information on Saturday's EF-3 tornado that damaged parts of Robertson and Leon counties.
Below you will find only the first observations and evaluations from Saturday night storm surveys. Complete and detailed information is expected in the coming days.
Declaration of public information
National Weather Service Fort Worth, TX
23:00 HAC on Saturday 13 April 2019
Preliminary investigation of tornado damage near Franklin in Robertson County, Texas
On Saturday night, the National Weather Service office in Fort Worth, Texas, conducted an initial storm damage survey in the city of Franklin and surrounding areas in Robertson County, Texas. The investigation concerned a violent supercell storm that had passed through Milam, Robertson, Leon and South Anderson counties earlier in the day on Saturday.
The most significant damage to the NWS team today occurred in Franklin. In a corridor two blocks long on the south side of Franklin, the team confirmed the damage caused by the EF-3 tornado on 2 residential sites. The maximum wind speed at these sites has been estimated at 140 mph. A number of additional structures on the south side of Franklin suffered EF-1 and EF-2 damage.
The NWS team was able to determine that this tornado had first formed near the Brazos River, in the far west of Robertson County, about 5 miles to the northwest. from Hearne, Texas. The tornado moved east to the northeast, crossing US Highway 6 about 4.5 miles north of Hearne. EF-1 damage was identified on a structure near this crossing, and significant damage to trees, consistent with the tornadic winds of intensity of EF-1, were observed along the road's right-of-way. The tornado remained on the ground from Highway 6 east to Franklin.
The NWS is aware of additional damage caused by Franklin, to the northeast passing through New Baden and east into Robertson County up to the east of Marquez in Leon County. . Other damage has also been reported elsewhere in Leon County. The NWS will conduct further surveys over the next two days to determine the exact dimensions and intensity of the tornado trajectory.
A final evaluation, including the results of the survey, should be completed and submitted no later than Monday, April 15 as part of a complete and fully formatted public statement.